Grunt jobs will come Justice Gorsuch's way at high court
- Author: Zachary Reyes Apr 12, 2017,
Apr 12, 2017, 18:17
Gorsuch, President Donald Trump's first nominee to the court, has a history of a conservative interpretation of the law. "His confirmation will forever be tainted by the Republican Senate majority's callous disregard for the historic rules and traditions of the Senate", said Wade Henderson, president and CEO of The Leadership Conference, in a statement after Gorsuch's confirmation. "I have always heard, the most important thing that a President does is appoint people, hopefully great people, like this appointment, to the United States Supreme Court".
Gorsuch was confirmed by a 54 to 45 vote on Friday, the closest margin since Justice Clarence Thomas was approved more than 25 years ago.
Federal district courts received about 290,000 civil cases previous year and terminated roughly 260,000, while slightly fewer than 372,000 remained pending, according to recent figures compiled by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.
"I have no doubt you will go down as one of the truly great justices in the history of the Supreme Court", he later added. However, Republicans blocked the move by using the "nuclear option" to change the rules in Senate and allow a simple majority of the votes to receive the confirmation.
"And I got it done in the first 100 days", Trump said to laughs.
Last week, the Democratic leadership announced they had 41 votes to filibuster Gorsuch and urged Trump to "change the nominee".
At the first, private event in a grand room inside the Supreme Court, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. administered the oath that all federal employees take.
"Communications director for the Penn State College Democrats O'Neill Kennedy referred to Gorsuch as a "well-educated, articulate, thoughtful judge" who "will serve the Supreme Court well" despite many Democrats looking down upon his previous rulings". "And I promise that I will do all my powers permit to be a faithful servant of the Constitution and laws of this great nation". He was hired as a Supreme Court clerk by fellow Coloradan Justice Byron White.
John Malcolm, director of Heritage's Center for Legal and Judicial Studies, expressed a similar positive sentiment regarding Gorsuch's swearing-in.
Conservative activists helped the Trump campaign put together a list of possible justices before the election; the White House chose a name from that list after the election; and then Senate Republicans used their majority to do all the heavy lifting. They include a religious rights case on April 19 in which a Missouri church is objecting to being denied state funds for a playground project due to a state ban on providing public money to religious organisations.
Gorsuch can't vote on cases argued before he was sworn-in.
His 66-day confirmation process was swift, but bitterly divisive. Potential cases that may land at the Supreme Court include battles between states and the federal government over Medicaid cuts. Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan were both sworn in publicly at the Supreme Court.